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E02235: Greek inscription from a lintel of the cathedral church at Bostra, mentioning *Sergios (soldier and martyr of Rusafa, S00023) and Bakchos (soldier and martyr of Barbalissos, S00079). Found at Bostra (Roman province of Arabia). Probably early 6th c.

online resource
posted on 2017-01-07, 00:00 authored by pnowakowski
Σαργήου, Βάχχου

1. Σαιργήου Waddington, CΑΡΓΗΟΥ Bankes

'Of Sergios and Bakchos.'

Text: IGLS 13/1, no. 9042.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Sergios, martyr in Syria, ob. 303-311 : S00023 Bakchos, martyr in Barbalissos (Syria), ob. c. 303-311 : S00079

Saint Name in Source

Σαίργηος, Σάργηος Βάχχος

Image Caption 1

Drawing by Bankes. From: IGLS 13/2, 9.

Image Caption 2

Majuscule edition by Waddington. From: LBW, 472.

Type of Evidence

Inscriptions - Formal inscriptions (stone, mosaic, etc.)


  • Greek

Evidence not before


Evidence not after


Activity not before


Activity not after


Place of Evidence - Region


Place of Evidence - City, village, etc


Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Bosra Sakkaia / Maximianopolis Σακκαια Sakkaia Saccaea Eaccaea Maximianopolis Shaqqa Schaqqa Shakka

Cult activities - Places

Cult building - independent (church)


Probably a stone lintel, decorated with a carving of a Χ-shaped cross or flower in the middle of the inscribed face. There is no published description. Now lost. The inscription was first recorded by William John Bankes, during his journeys in the Mediterranean between 1815 and 1820 (for his work in the Near East, see the comments in E02194). Bankes made a drawing but this remained unpublished until 2011, when it was included in the second part of the thirteenth volume of Inscriptions grecques et latines de la Syrie by Maurice Sartre and Annie Sartre-Fauriat. The stone was also seen in the 1860s by William Waddington, over a doorway of the cathedral church in Bostra. Waddington offers a slightly different transcription to that by Bankes and, sadly, says nothing about the shape of the slab. Maurice Sartre was unable to locate the stone during his surveys of Bostra in the 1970s.


The inscription almost certainly refers to the cathedral of Bostra, dedicated to two famous martyred soldiers: Sergios (venerated in Rusafa) and Bakchos (venerated in Barbalissos). For the full building inscription of this church, mentioning Sergios and Bakchos together with *Leontios (probably the martyr of Tripolis in Lebanon), see E02234. Dating: as the cathedral church of Bostra, where the inscription was found, was constructed in 512/513, our text is likely to date from the early 6th c.


Edition: Sartre, M. (ed.), Les inscriptions grecques et latines de la Syrie, vol. 13/1: Bostra: nos. 9001 à 9472 (BAH 13, Paris: Librairie orientaliste P. Geuthner, 1982), no. 9042. Waddington, W.H., Inscriptions grecques et latines de la Syrie (Paris: Firmin Didot Frères, Libraires-Éditeurs, 1870), no. 1921. Further reading: Sartre-Fauriat, A., "Georges, Serge, Élie et quelques autres saints connus et inédits de la province d'Arabie", in: Fr. Prévot (ed.), Romanité et cité chrétienne. Permances et mutations. Intégration et exclusion du Ier au VIe siècle. Mélanges en l'honneur d'Yvette Duval (Paris: De Boccard, 2000), 303, note 59. Sartre, M., Sartre-Fauriat, A. (eds.), Inscriptions grecques et latines de la Syrie, vol. 13/2: Bostra (Supplément) et la plaine de la Nuqrah (BAH 194, Beirut: Institut français du Proche-Orient, 2011), 9 (supplement). Reference works: Supplementum Epigraphicum Graecum 61, 1480.

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity



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